Investigators were unable to identify the culprit behind it. historical leak last year’s Supreme Court Draft Opinion Overturning Abortion Rights Nationwide, court marshalls said Thursday, but the search continues.
Ah report The Marshal’s Office of the U.S. Supreme Court announced Thursday that it conducted 126 interviews with 97 employees and scrutinized computer and printer records to find out who leaked Judge Samuel Alito’s draft opinion. details how they attempted to identify the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization to Politico.news site Document published May 3, 2023 — More than 6 weeks before the Court issues its overturned final opinion Law vs Wade.
“The leak wasn’t just a misguided protest attempt. It was a serious attack on the judicial process,” read a Supreme Court statement released Thursday alongside the report. The judge stressed the need for confidentiality during deliberations and called the leak an “extraordinary betrayal of trust.”
Shortly after the leak, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts order the sheriff’s office This is usually only entrusted with providing security for the judge to investigate the matter, but the team eventually came in empty-handed.
“At present, it is not possible to determine the identity of the individuals who may have disclosed the documents or how the draft opinion ended up in politics on the basis of the preponderance of the evidentiary standards,” the report said. It concludes: “No one has confessed to publicly disclosing the documents, and none of the available forensic or other evidence provides a basis for identifying individuals as the document’s provenance.” I didn’t.”
Their digital analysis convinced investigators that the court system was unlikely to have been hacked by an outside actor. It cannot be ruled out, for example it could have been left in public spaces inside or outside the building,” the report added.
In addition to the court’s nine judges, 82 employees had access to electronic or hard copies of the draft opinion.
The Marshal said, “The investigation focused on court personnel – both temporary (legal clerks) and permanent employees – who had or may have accessed the draft opinion.” The judge did not immediately answer questions about whether the judge himself was included among these “permanent employees” or excluded from the investigation.
The Marshal’s team “determined that no further investigation was necessary” for many of those 82 employees, according to Thursday’s report.
Employees asked to surrender personal cell phones for investigation submitted call logs, text messages and bills for investigators to review, but found nothing incriminating. bottom.
Court employees were also required, under penalty of perjury, to sign affidavits swearing they were not behind the leak. I have annotated my affidavit to that effect because I acknowledged that I spoke about the draft opinion and the vote count,” the report advised.
Some electronic data still needs to be reviewed and some lines of inquiry remain open, but for now the court is concerned with preventing such leaks from happening again. It seems
To that end, the marshal drafted a series of security reforms, including severely limiting the number of employees who could access confidential documents.
in November, The New York Times reported Former anti-abortion leader Reverend Rob Schenk had written to the Chief Justice He said he was informed of the favorable outcome of the 2014 contraceptive and religious rights lawsuit before its announcement.
This case also included a majority opinion written by Justice Alito. Judge Alito reported that the Times dined with his Schenck friends. One of them emailed him the next day to say he had “interesting news about her” and to call her — please don’t email her for her details. .
Alito denied disclosing its opinion in 2014.